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Image: Hilary Duff
Matt Sayles  /  AP
Hilary Duff reportedly is upset that former boyfriend Joel Madden is now dating Nicole Richie.
By
msnbc.com
updated 1/10/2007 2:51:38 AM ET 2007-01-10T07:51:38

Don’t invite Nicole Richie and Hilary Duff to the same party.

Duff has bad-mouthed Richie — who she thinks is a “skank,” according to Us Weekly.

Joel Madden, who is dating reality show star Richie and who used to date the “Lizzie McGuire” star is apparently at the center of the friction. Madden and Duff split in November, and although Madden has been loyal to Richie, he keeps calling his ex, according to the mag, but she doesn’t return his calls.

“[Duff] can’t believe he’s dating Nicole and thinks she’s a skank,” a source told Us, adding that when Duff heard about Richie’s arrest, “she asked if Nicole had been coming from Joel’s. ... She kept saying she never knew Joel at all.”

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Cruz keeping the rumors alive
Penelope Cruz claims she knows why those lesbian rumors refuse to die. The “Vanilla Sky” actress, who has long been the subject of speculation about her sexuality, says she helped keep them going.

Cruz has been friends with Salma Hayek since she came to the U.S. from Spain about seven years ago. There friendship started a buzz, which grew a lot louder when she groped her friend’s behind at a press conference while the two were promoting their film “Banditas.”

“I grabbed Salma’s ass just to keep things moving, because everyone was a little slow,” Cruz said while promoting her new film “Volver” reports Australia’s Courier Mail. “And, of course, the energy changed when I did that.”

The speculation in Hayek’s native Mexico is rampant. “There are magazine covers in Mexico describing us as these lesbians because of that,” Hayek said. “A lot of people were saying we were lovers.”

And then there’s the bit about Cruz saying that her “Head in the Clouds” co-star Charlize Theron was her best-ever on-screen kiss — despite kissing then main-squeeze Matthew McConaughey in the flick “Sahara.”

Notes from all over
Whitney Houston’s comeback song has leaked — and the reaction is mixed. “Family First” is the first song the diva has recorded since her well-publicized battle with drugs, and was recorded with her mother Cissy Houston and her aunt Dionne Warwick for Tyler Perry’s new flick “Daddy’s Little Girls.” The soundtrack doesn’t hit stores until January 18, but it’s already hit the Internet. “It’s heartwarming,” says one Houston fan. “But I miss her old pipes.” ... The beat up cowboy hat worn by Jake Gyllenhaal in “Brokeback Mountain” has been sold on eBay for $10,100. The cash goes to a children’s charity. ...  Heidi Fleiss says she had to postpone the opening of her Stud Farm — an all-male-catering-to-women house of ill repute.

Jeannette Walls Delivers the Scoop Mondays through Thursdays on MSNBC.com

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